Made of high-quality 304 grade stainless steel. 20-gallon capacity. Has the ability to hold ice for up to five days. Bottom shelf offers extra storage. Two-sided easy access lid. Includes drainage plug for convenience.
Sparse reports that the bar cart may arrive with a few dings.
Versatile in terms of function with a fun and modern look. Adds an instant hip-factor with modern colors and a simple, functional design. Easy to assemble and store.
Great for serving small parties, but not ideal for large events.
Spacious and versatile brown wicker cart features a sturdy frame and table top. Features multiple shelves and a storage drawer. Has a braking mechanism. Quick to put together.
Some reviews suggest the material could be of higher quality.
Comes with an ice bucket that can chill up to three bottles of wine. Features a flat top to be used as table space. Attractive design.
Priced on the high side, but built to last several years.
Two-shelf unit can easily hold an assortment of beverage buckets and bar accessories, and the tray design means nothing can roll off and break. Two locking swivel casters make it easy to maneuver.
If left outside without a cover, the trays can fill with water when it rains. It makes a lot of noise when being rolled along concrete.
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Whether it’s your regular weekend barbecue or you’re hosting a posh outdoor event, an outdoor bar cart comes in handy for beverages of all sorts. An outdoor bar cart may be as sophisticated as its indoor brethren, suitable for displaying top-shelf liquors and mixers. At the other end of the spectrum, it may be more utilitarian, simply offering mobile shelves and storage.
With outdoor bar carts, you can choose from a range of materials, styles, and sizes to fit a large patio or a small balcony. One of the most useful features of bar carts is that they are portable, so you’ll want one that’s easily maneuverable so you can bring the party with you.
Our shopping guide outlines all you need to consider when shopping for the ideal bar cart for your outdoor space. If you’re interested in our top picks for the best al fresco carts on the market, check out the matrix above.
You can find an outdoor bar cart to suit any design taste, from sleek, minimal styles to classic mid-century modern. Some carts are rustic, others retro, and some are whimsical or themed (think Margaritaville). Choose an outdoor bar cart that complements your outdoor space.
That said, if you are looking to mix fancy drinks, you’ll need an outdoor bar cart that can safely hold and display bottles, and you may want to choose a cart that is designed to look like a traditional bar cart. If you prefer to use the cart for serve-yourself beverages, a simple design with lots of shelves for holding ice buckets or small kegs may be more your style.
The perfect solution for casual parties and BBQs
This outdoor bar cart is the ultimate serve-yourself option. The insulted cooler can keep ice cold for days and even chills drinks throughout the day in the summer heat. The two-sided top allows for easy access, and the built-in bottle opener is a nice touch. Despite being robust, it’s also lightweight and easy to maneuver. The high-grade stainless steel gives this cart an on-trend look.
Make sure you choose a cart specifically designed for the outdoors. These bar carts will generally be made of powder-coated steel, stainless steel, or hardwoods like eucalyptus, acacia, or teak. Other popular outdoor-safe materials include weather-resistant wicker or rattan, tempered glass, plastic, resin, and polypropene.
Some high-end outdoor bar carts are designed to be permanently kept outside, perhaps as a modular part of an outdoor kitchen. These are generally heavy-duty, although they will still have wheels to allow for repositioning. Lower-end bar carts can be left outside, and often are over the summer, but they will last longer if they are stored inside and wheeled out when needed.
If you have a small patio or plan to use your bar cart on a balcony, you will want to stick to smaller carts. No matter what size you choose, make sure you can easily maneuver your cart outside through any doors or passages in your path. If you are also using the bar cart to serve food, make sure it’s wide enough to hold several plates or trays. Also, consider where you are going to store your cart when it’s not in use, which may affect the size you choose.
Bar carts evolved from the Victorian-era tea trolley for high tea, which is still a good use for them today.
You want your outdoor bar cart to be mobile, so wheels are a must-have. Some carts have two wheels and can be moved like a wheelbarrow. Others have four wheels. If that’s the case, make sure at least two of the wheels have a brake mechanism so you can keep the cart steady once it’s parked. Wheels that swivel tend to be easier to maneuver.
Some minimal carts just have a top and bottom shelf. You will often find bar carts like this in a very modern design or a classic mid-century look. Some outdoor bar carts have multiple shelves for a utilitarian look.
Some outdoor bar carts have a built-in insulated cooler. If so, make sure there is a plug so you can drain out the water once the ice has melted.
You can often find a built-in bottle opener on the side of a bar cart, especially if it is one with a cooler. If not, make sure your bar cart is stocked with one!
You can find outdoor bar carts with bottle holders built in as well as holders for other bar tools or beverages. Some have wire racks to lay wine or other bottles flat. You can also find carts with a removable ice bucket or tray.
Consider whether you have to negotiate your bar cart up and down stairs to get it outside. If so, you should ensure the cart can be easily lifted, so look for a lightweight design that you can grab at either end.
You can find small outdoor bar carts for a very reasonable amount, around $50 to $75. For a larger, moderate-size bar cart, expect to pay between $150 and $300.
There are some high-end outdoor bar carts in the $800 range. These should have a quality build and premium materials. The sky is the limit, though – you can find designer bar carts for several thousand dollars.
For a summer party, consider giving your outdoor bar cart a distinct role, such as a champagne station, lemonade stand, or fancy water station with a variety of flavored waters to keep everyone hydrated.
We can think of all sorts of uses for this fun outdoor bar cart, which comes in an array of bright colors. The two slatted shelves are sturdy, with each one capable of supporting 75 pounds. A great choice for apartment balconies or small patios, this cart is also perfect for anyone short on storage since it can fold flat. It also looks smart enough to use indoors.
For very small spaces or for an additional cart for a large party, we like the DESIGNA Metal Rolling Storage Cart. The three baskets come on rolling wheels (two are lockable) and can hold a variety of bottles and accessories. The contemporary design and vibrant color options make it a functional and fun outdoor bar cart. The Giantex Rolling Rattan Bar Cart, on the other hand, is a larger, more traditional, purpose-built bar cart. The spacious, tempered glass top makes a nice display for drinks and glassware, and the large bottom drawer can safely store a number of bar accessories. The synthetic polyethylene rattan is easy to maintain while still imparting a classic look to complement patio furniture.
Q. How do I keep my outdoor bar cart clean?
A. If your bar cart develops mildew from being outside, you can find many products on the market to remove it, but wiping down the cart with diluted white vinegar or bleach works, too. For stainless steel, Bar Keeper’s Friend is good cleaner to have on hand.
Q. Is it okay to leave an outdoor bar cart outside year-round?
A. If you leave your bar cart outside all the time, invest in a cover to prevent fading or weather damage, regardless of the material. If you are short on indoor storage space, you may want to consider a folding bar cart that can be stacked away.
Q. Are there outdoor furniture sets that include bar carts?
A. Bar carts are rarely included in the classic patio set, which is usually a table, chairs, and possibly a bar counter. You can choose an outdoor bar cart in a design and material that matches your patio furniture, though, especially if you have rattan or wood furniture. Or go for a cart in a pop of color to avoid being too matchy.
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